suspend

verb
sus·​pend | \ sə-ˈspend How to pronounce suspend (audio) \
suspended; suspending; suspends

Definition of suspend

transitive verb

1 : to debar temporarily especially from a privilege, office, or function suspend a student from school
2a : to cause to stop temporarily suspend bus service
b : to set aside or make temporarily inoperative suspend the rules
3 : to defer to a later time on specified conditions suspend sentence
4 : to hold in an undetermined or undecided state awaiting further information suspend judgment suspend disbelief
5a : hang especially : to hang so as to be free on all sides except at the point of support suspend a ball by a thread
b : to keep from falling or sinking by some invisible support (such as buoyancy) dust suspended in the air
c : to put or hold in suspension suspended sediment
6a : to keep fixed or lost (as in wonder or contemplation)
b : to keep waiting in suspense or indecision
7 : to hold (a musical note) over into the following chord

intransitive verb

1 : to cease operation temporarily
2 : to stop payment or fail to meet obligations
3 : hang

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for suspend

defer, postpone, suspend, stay mean to delay an action or proceeding. defer implies a deliberate putting off to a later time. deferred buying a car until spring postpone implies an intentional deferring usually to a definite time. the game is postponed until Saturday suspend implies temporary stoppage with an added suggestion of waiting until some condition is satisfied. business will be suspended while repairs are underway stay often suggests the stopping or checking by an intervening agency or authority. the governor stayed the execution

Did You Know?

When something is suspended, it is "left hanging;" it is neither in full operation nor permanently ended. Suspense is a state of uncertainty and maybe anxiety. When we watch a play or movie, we enjoy experiencing a "suspension of disbelief;" that is, we allow ourselves to believe we're watching reality, even though we aren't truly fooled.Suspension can also mean physical hanging; thus, in a suspension bridge, the roadway actually hangs from huge cables. When some substance is "in suspension", its particles are "hanging" in another substance, mixed into it but not actually dissolved, like fine sand in water, or sea spray in the air at the seashore.

Examples of suspend in a Sentence

He was suspended from the team for missing too many practices. The police officers were suspended without pay for their conduct. The principal suspended the student from school for fighting. The city suspended bus service during the storm. The company was forced to suspend operations. They have suspended the peace talks. I advise suspending judgment until the investigation is over. Her license to practice law was suspended. We can suspend the rules just this once. He's driving with a suspended license.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

In that murk of uncertainty, Boeing and many of its airline customers will want the regulator to wait for substantial evidence to emerge before taking the drastic step of suspending flights. Washington Post, "Fate of 737 Max Could Turn On a Single Trump Tweet," 18 Sep. 2019 The law does allow judges the discretion of handing down, say, life with all but 30 years suspended. Tim Prudente, baltimoresun.com, "Prison terms for killing of Baltimore County Police Officer Amy Caprio draw attention to felony murder rule," 17 Sep. 2019 Wolmer was ahead 2–1 when play was suspended after the lightning strike. Jenna West, SI.com, "Three Jamaican Soccer Players Sent to Hospital After Lightning Strikes Field," 17 Sep. 2019 He was arrested by Brantley County authorities on charges of driving with a suspended/revoked license, weaving over a roadway and being a fugitive of justice. Eric Levenson, CNN, "Florida mother and 4 children were missing for weeks. Then a bystander smelled something horrible.," 17 Sep. 2019 UVA last week suspended roughly a dozen patient lawsuits, KHN reported. Megan Cerullo, CBS News, "Hospitals are some of America's toughest debt collectors," 17 Sep. 2019 Aramco, the world’s largest oil company, was forced to suspend production of almost six million barrels per day, more than half of Saudi daily oil output. Robin Wright, The New Yorker, "In Saudi Arabia, World Oil Supplies Are in Flames," 16 Sep. 2019 China will suspend tariff hikes on soybeans, pork and some other farm goods, the Xinhua News Agency said, citing the Cabinet planning agency and the Commerce Ministry. Joe Mcdonald, chicagotribune.com, "China will suspend tariff hikes on soybeans, pork, other U.S. farm goods," 13 Sep. 2019 Days after more than a million people took to the streets in early June, kicking off the protests, Lam suspended an extradition bill that sparked the unrest but refused to formally withdraw it. Washington Post, "Lam says PR firms declined to help restore Hong Kong’s image," 18 Sep. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'suspend.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of suspend

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for suspend

Middle English, from Anglo-French suspendre, from Latin suspendere, from sub-, sus- up + pendere to cause to hang, weigh

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about suspend

Statistics for suspend

Last Updated

16 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for suspend

The first known use of suspend was in the 14th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for suspend

suspend

verb

English Language Learners Definition of suspend

: to force (someone) to leave a job, position, or place for a usually short period of time as a form of punishment
: to stop (something) for a usually short period of time
: to make (something) happen later : to delay (something)

suspend

verb
sus·​pend | \ sə-ˈspend How to pronounce suspend (audio) \
suspended; suspending

Kids Definition of suspend

1 : to force to give up some right or office for a time The cheater was suspended from school.
2 : to hang especially so as to be free except at one point A light bulb was suspended from the ceiling.
3 : to stop or do away with for a time The principal is suspending a rule.
4 : to stop operation or action for a time All business suspended during the storm.

suspend

transitive verb
sus·​pend

Legal Definition of suspend

1 : to debar temporarily from a privilege, office, or function
2a : to stop temporarily suspend trading
b : to make temporarily ineffective suspend a license
c : stay suspend a hearing
d : to defer until a later time — see also suspended sentence at sentence

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on suspend

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with suspend

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for suspend

Spanish Central: Translation of suspend

Nglish: Translation of suspend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of suspend for Arabic Speakers

Comments on suspend

What made you want to look up suspend? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

tired or exhausted

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Where in the World? A Quiz

  • peter bruegel tower of babel painting
  • What language does pajama come from?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!